Film and TV

The Power Of The Dog Is Compelling Enough To Lead The 2021 Houston Film Critics Society Nominations

Benedict Cumberbatch is also up for Best Actor.
Benedict Cumberbatch is also up for Best Actor. Netflix
Jane Campion's unsettling Western, The Power of the Dog, leads the 2021 Houston Film Critics Society nominations with nine, including Best Picture, Director, Lead Actor (Benedict Cumberbatch), Supporting Actress (Kirsten Dunst) and Supporting Actor (Kodi Smit-McPhee).

Winners will be announced February 19.

Kenneth Branagh's Belfast, Denis Villeneuve's Dune, and Sian Heder's CODA are all up for five awards each, including Best Picture. Rounding out the Best Picture selections are Don’t Look Up, King Richard, Licorice Pizza, Parallel Mothers, tick, tick … Boom and The Tragedy of Macbeth.

The HFCS is also introducing a new award for 2021: Best Ensemble Cast. Those nominees are Belfast, CODA, Mass, Nightmare Alley and The Power of the Dog.

The Society will one again be awarding its Texas Independent Film Award (TIFA) — which honors a movie shot in the Lone Star State — to one of the following: Amaraica, Playing God, Red Rocket, Test Pattern or 12 Mighty Orphans.

The 40 members of the Houston Film Critics Society are working film journalists on television, radio, online and in traditional print. The organization’s mission is to promote the advancement and appreciation of film in the Houston community and beyond. For more info (including my "hilarious" bio), check out

2021 Houston Film Critic Society Nominations

Don’t Look Up
King Richard
Licorice Pizza
Parallel Mothers
The Power of the Dog
tick, tick … Boom
The Tragedy of Macbeth

Paul Thomas Anderson, Licorice Pizza
Kenneth Branagh, Belfast
Jane Campion, The Power of the Dog
Guillermo del Toro, Nightmare Alley
Denis Villeneuve, Dune

Actor, Leading Role
Benedict Cumberbatch, The Power of the Dog
Peter Dinklage, Cyrano
Andrew Garfield, tick, tick…Boom
Will Smith, King Richard
Denzel Washington, The Tragedy of Macbeth

Actress, Leading Role
Jessica Chastain, The Eyes of Tammy Faye
Olivia Colman, The Lost Daughter
Penélope Cruz, Parallel Mothers
Alana Haim, Licorice Pizza
Emilia Jones, CODA
Kristen Stewart, Spencer

Actor, Supporting Role
Andrew Garfield, The Eyes of Tammy Faye
Ciarán Hinds, Belfast
Troy Kotsur, CODA
J.K. Simmons, Being the Ricardos
Kodi Smit-McPhee, The Power of the Dog

Actress, Supporting Role
Jessie Buckley, The Lost Daughter
Ariana DeBose, West Side Story
Ann Dowd, Mass
Kirsten Dunst, The Power of Dog
Aunjanue Ellis, King Richard

Ensemble Cast
Nightmare Alley
The Power of the Dog

Don’t Look Up
Licorice Pizza
The Power of the Dog

Animated Feature
Raya and the Last Dragon
The Mitchells vs. the Machines

Nightmare Alley
The Power of the Dog
The Tragedy of Macbeth
West Side Story

Documentary Feature
The Rescue
Summer of Soul

Foreign Language Feature
Drive My Car
Parallel Mothers
Riders of Justice
The Worst Person in the World

Original Score
The French Dispatch
The Harder They Fall
The Power of the Dog

Original Song
"Dos Oruguitas" from Encanto
"Guns Go Bang" from The Harder They Fall
"Just Look Up" from Don’t Look Up
"No Time to Die" from No Time to Die
"Wherever I Fall - Pt. 1" from Cyrano

Visual Effects
The Matrix Resurrections
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings

Stunt Coordination
Black Widow
The Matrix Resurrections
No Time to Die
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings
Spider-Man: No Way Home

Texas Independent Film Award
Playing God
Red Rocket
Test Pattern
12 Mighty Orphans
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Peter Vonder Haar writes movie reviews for the Houston Press and the occasional book. The first three novels in the "Clarke & Clarke Mysteries" - Lucky Town, Point Blank, and Empty Sky - are out now.
Contact: Pete Vonder Haar